« PreviousContinue »
Bring thou me that may,
Al that mest may,
And heighest weren of priis :
A schip with grene and gray..
With vair, and eke with griis,
With alle thing Y say,
That pende io marchandis,
Thai ferden of this wise,
In til Yrlond thede.
In his schip was boun,
All that mister ware :
Out of Carlioun ;
Riche was his schip fare:
Thai rered goinfaynoun;
A winde lo wille hem bare;
Deuelin hat the toun,
To lond thai comen thare,
The best :
The King present thai bare, -"A brid bright, thai ches,
And asked leue to rest.
The King present thai brought,
Another to the Quene,
Y sonde foryat thai nought,
To wite, and nought at wene,
To schip when thai hem thought,
That at the court hadde bene,
Swiche mayde ras neuer wrought,
That thai euer hadde sene
The cuntre al bidene,
Thai seighe fle ful right.
Out of Deuelin toun,
The folk wel fast ran,
In a water to droun,
So ferd were thai than;
For doute of o dragoun,
Thai seyd to schip thai wan,
To hauen that were boun;
No rought thai of what man
That may bim sle or tan,
Y sonde schal haue to mede. * In the prose romance, the plan of procuring Tristrem's deatn, may at first, by poetical license, and afterwards, by the literal by sending him to ask in marriage the piece of Moraunt, whom interpretation of the audience, have given rise to the supposed be had slain, is imputed to Mark hinself.
quality of vomiting flames. + It may be objected, by those who adhere to Mr. Warton's The mention of the dragon leads to another remark. The word derivation of romantic fiction from the Moors and Saracens, that dragon is, in Owen's Welsh Dictionary, translated a leader, as the introduction of a dragon, the creature of Oriental fancy, sa- pen-dragon is rendered a generalissimo, and dragonac! a su vours of a closer acquaintance with the fables of the East than preme chief. Such being the case, there seeins no great violence could have been acquired in Scotland during the 13th century in the supposition, that the dragon slain by Sir Tristremn (one of According to Warton, “ Dragons are a sure mark of Orientalism." the very few marvellous incidents in the tale) was some chief of -- Dissert. on Origin of Romantic Fiction. To this it might cader, the enemy of the Irish monarch. This exposition seems be sufficient to answer, that the Scottish nation sent many war less forced than that of Regnar Lodbrog'y slaughter of two snakes, riors to the Crusades. But, in fact, the idea of this fabulous ani which one commentator explains to mean bis having surmounted mal was familiar to the Celtic tribes at an early period ; and it is the winding and misshapen wall of the fortress in which a lovely stated to have been borne on the banner of Pendragon, who from virgin was confinedl; and another, bis having conquered and that circumstance derived bis naine. A dragon was also the slain a seneschal, whose name was Orme, or Serpent. In truth, standard of the renowned Arthur. A description of this banner, the hyperbolical and enigmatical descriptions of the British bards. the magical work of Merlin, occurs in the romance of Arthour and the Gothic scalds, may often lead us to confound with fiction and Merlin, in the Auchinleck MS, and is not unpoetical: what was used as metaphor and parable. The crusaders, in " Merlin bar ber goinfanoun;
passing through the Archipelago, made a yet more ridiculous Upon the top alade a dragoun,
mistake; believing that the water-sponts, which often occur Swithe griecliche a litel croune.
there, were owing to the frolics of an immense black dragon, Fast hin hiheld altho in the toune,
whom they endeavoured to drive away by -bouts and clashing of For the mouth he had grinninge,
arms.-BROMPTON, Chron. apui Decem Scriptores, p. 1216. And the tong out flatlinge,
It seems that the minstrels did not know, or did not regard the That ont kest sparkes of fer,
tradition, that St. Patrick freed Ireland from poisonous animals. Into the skies that flowen cler; That dragon had a long taile,
Not only the dragon in the text, but another, slain by Guy of That was wipper hoked waun-taile."
Warwick, were natives of the land of Saints. This last is de The dragon cast fire when the 'conflict deepened, like the Chi scribed at length :
# Never was best no so hie, mæra upon the crest of Turnus.
Gret heued it hach, and grislich to sele;
His nek is greter than a bule,
His borli is swarter than ani cole;
It is michel, and long, and grivelich, In the Welsh Triads, I find the dragon repeatedly mentioned :
Fram the naval upward unschapeliche and, in a battle fought at Bedford, about 752, betwixt Ethelbald,
The arnalust scale that on him is, King of Mercia, and Cuthred, King of Wessex, a golden dragon,
No wepen no may attaine y wis; the banner of the latter, was borne in the front of combat by
As a somer it is brested before in the brale, Edelheim, or Edelhun, a chief of the West Saxons. - BROMPTON.
And switter ernend than ani stede. Chron. Indeed, even supposing that, during the long residence
He hath clawes als a lyoun, of the Romans in Britain, they had not imparted to the inhabi
Men saith that it is a dragoun; tants their traditions concerning dragons, it is hard to see why
Grel winges he hath with to fe,
His shaft to tell alle ne mnowe we." the Celtic or Gothic imagination might not conceive such a mon ster, without borrowing the idea from the East. Serpents and The adventure of the dragon in the text is literally copied into lizariig were well known to the northern nations : to equip them the prose folio, but is placed during Tristrem: first residence in with wings (although these are neither mentioned in the case of Ireland, and previous to the discovery of his real name. He then Merlin's dragon, nor of Tristrem's) seems to be no great stretch ceeds in his embassy, by succouring the King of Ireland when of fancy; and the burning heat, induced by the bite of an adder, hard beset in a tournament.
His speche les he thar ;
Nedes he most abide,
That he no may ferther far:
The steward com that tide,
The heued oway he schar,
And toke it Y sonde ihar,
And seyd dere he hadde hir bought.
The steward wald, ful fain,
Han Y sonde, yif he mought,
The King answerd oghain,
Fair the bataile him thought;
Y sonde, nought to lain,
Of him no wil sche nought;
There the dragoun was slain,
Hye and hir moder sought,
Who that wonder wrought,
That durst that dragoun slo.
-“Dede the steward this dede ?
Certes,” quanh Y sonde, “nay!
This ich brende stede
No aught he neuer a day;
No this riche wede,
Nas neuer his, so the to say."-
Forther as thai yede,
A man thai founde whare lay,
"Certes," than seyd thai, It no vailedo botoun,
"This man the dragoun slough."
His mouthe opened thai,
And pelt treacle* in that man;
Whan Tristrem speke may,
His tale he bigan;
And redyli gan to say,
Hou he the dragoun wan;
-"The tong Y bar oway, It brast on peces thre:
Thus venimed he me than."
The Quen, that michel can,
Out of his hose it toke.
They seighen he hadde the right,
The steward hadde the wough,
And yif he durst fight,
With him the dragoun slough:
Tristrem spak as a knight,
He wold proue it anough;
So noblelich he hem hight,
Thereof Y sonde lough,
To his waraunt he drough,
His schippe and al his pride.
The Quen asked what he is
That durst the dragon abide ?
-"Marchaunt Icham, Y wis,
My schip lith here biside;
He seyt he hath don this,
Prouen Ichil his pride.
Er he Y sonde kisse,
Oghaines him wald he ride,
Y sonde seyd that tide,
-“Allas, that thou ner knight!"-
Her chaumpioun that day,
Richeliche gun thai fede;
Til hem think that he may,
Don a douhti dede.
His armes long weren thai,
His scholders large on brede,
The Quen, forsothe to say, * Trescle, or theriaca, was long accounted a choice remedy
To a bath gan him lede, anainst pozon, and was beld, accordingly, in high reputation. Chaucer mentions
" Trewe as treacle er thai to fend." ** medicine more fine than treacle."
Theriaca is derived from the Greek Anplov, bestia venenata. In a M8. poem on the praise of women, it is used as an emblem The use and composition of the medicine may be found in the of fidelitsa
20th book of Pliny, cap. 24.
To Marke the riche knight;
That after the he gan long."-
So swore he, day and night,
And borwes fond he strong,
Amendes of al wrong,
That Ysonde schuld be Quen.
Tristrem swore that thing,
Thai seyd it schuld stand;
That he schuld Y sonde bring,
Thai token it vnder hand,
To Mark the riche King,
Oliue yif thai him fand,
And make hir with his ring,
Quen of Ingeland,
To say :
The forward fast thai band, _"Moraunt min em, the gode,
Er thai parted oway.
The steward forsoke his dedet
Though he herd he Tristrem hight;
The King swore so God him spede,
That bothen schuld haue right;
The steward seyd, -"Wrong iher yede, This thef (thi] brother slough.
For nold he nought fight."
Tristrem, to his mede,
Thai yolden Ysonde the bright;
To prisoun that other knight,
The maiden biseketh the King.
No asked he lond, no lithe,
Bot that maiden bright:
He busked him al so swithe,
Bothe squier and knight;
Her moder about was blithe,
And tok a drink of might,
That loue wald kithe, I
And tok it Brengwain the bright,
" At er spouseing a night,
Yif Marke and hir to drink."
Y sonde, bright of hewe,
Is fer out in the se,
A winde oghain hem blewe,
That sail no might ther be;
So rewe the knightes trewe,
Tristrem so rewe he;s
Euer as thai com newe, “Tho Y Tramtris hight,
He on oghain hem thre;
Swete Ysonde, the fre,
Asked Bringwain a drink. * This seems to be an error of the transcriber. Ysonde did not the principal ingredient in these love potiong ; but the bones of a suspect the stranger to be Tramısis, her old preceptor, but Tris- green frus, (provided the flesh had been eaten by ants.) the head trem, who hnd slain her uncle Moraunt; and her conjecture is of a kite, the marrow of a wolt's lett foot, mixed with ambergris. confirmed by the broken sword, 'The prose work mentions this a pigeon's liver, stewed in the blood of the person to be beloved discovery, which it places during Tristrem's first abode in Ireland. and many other recipes, more or less nanscons, are confidently With greater plausibility, it represents the Queen, not Ysonde, as a verred to be of equal virtue. In Middleton's Witch,* a young gal. the lady who threatened the hero with personal vengeance; lant goes to the cave of an enchantress, to procure a love spell; while the King, moved by the laws of hospitality, and by the
" Hernk. Thou shalt have choice of twentie, wet or drie. " bounty of chivalry," which Tristrem had displayed, saves him
Alınachille. Nay, let's have drie ones. from death, but banishes him from Ireland. But Mr. Douce: Fruge
Hec. If thou wilt usket by way of cnp and potion,
I'll give thee a remora shall be witch her straight ment, as usual, concurs with Tomas of Erceldoune. Vide p. 328
Alm. A rernora !
-hat's that? This seems to be alluded to in Mr. Douce's Fragment, where
Hec. A little suck-stone: Tristrem says, he deserved Ysonde's pardon for her uncle's death, Some call it a stelamprey; a small fish. by protecting her against the claim of a man whom she hated, p.
Alm. And must't be butterer? 329. The name given to this false steward, in the prose folio, is Hec. The bones of a dead frog, ing, wondrous pretious, Aguynguerren the Red.
The flesh conanimal by piza-mires." 1 This philtre, or boire amoureuse, as the romancers called it, In another scene, Almachildes thus describes the bounties of produced the fatal and unchangeable affection, by which Ysonde the witch :and Tristrem were so inseparably united. If we suppose that it
“ Alm. The who son old helent would have given me the
Brayne of a cat, once, in my handkercher. I bad was only a medical aphrodisiac, the tale will not appear incredi
Her make mwce with't, with a vengeaner! And a ble. The hero and heroine experienced Ovid's maxim,"Philtrit Docent animis, vimque furoris habent.”
Little bone in the Withermost part of a wolfr's faiset
I bad bor pick her teeth with'i, with a pesulence !" was irremediable ; and the continuance of their guilty intercourse described by the Queen of Ireland. When the effects of temporary delirium had taken place, the evil
The virtues of the magic draught ot Sir Tristrera are thus
"Ce bruivage cet appelle le was the natural consequence of the original crime. But our an: boire amoureux; car si-tost comme le Roy Marc en aura beu, et cestors held a more marvellous doctrine. Their ideas of the drink of might were not confined to its immediate stimulating effects : pourroient mettre discord entre eulx.” Folio xli.
ma fille apres, ilz se uymerent si merveilleusement, que nul no it was supposed, through magic, or occult sympathy, to continuo
Dexterity in rowing, as it was a necessary, so it was deemed its operation during the life of those who partook of the beverage. The rules for composing such philtree are to be found in every
an bonourable accomplishment, among the heroes of chivalry. anthor that treats of physics, from the days of the ancients to the • This curione old play afforded the songs and choruss for Macbeth. middle of the 17th century; from Pliny's Natural History to tho only
existed in MS, el Mr. Resil printed a few copies for the use of his friends Solid Treasure of Albert the Leer. The 'notert hippomanes was 1 This is a clanical spell, menuoned by Pliny
To say ;
Play miri he may,
With that worthli wight,
In boure night and day,
Al blithe was the knight;
He might with hir play,
That wist Brengwain the bright,
As tho :
Thai loued with al her might, Sche bad Tristrem bigin,
And Hodain dede al so. Her loue might no man tvin,
Tvai wikes in the strand,
No seyl thai no drewe;
In to Inglond,
A wind to wille hem blewe: That was y-cleped Hodain,
The King on hunting thai fand; The coupe he licked that tide, I
A knaue that he knewe, Tho doan it sett Bringwain :
He made him knight with hand, Thai loued al in lide,
For his tidinges newe,
Ysonde, bright of hewe,
Ther spoused Mark the King.
He spoused hir with his ring;
Of fest no speke Y nought:
Brengwain with outen lesing, With Ysonde ich night;
Dede as hye had thought, The ancient Scandinavians, whose manners gave a strong tinge It appears, from the following passage in Barbazan's Fabliaus, ta the feudal ages, were, from their roving and piratical protes that the love of 'Tristrem and Ysonde was proverbial among the Son otized to understand the use of the oar. Harold the Valiant French minstrels :brests of kill in this exercise, as one of his most estimable
"C'oncquea Tristrans Yvenlt la Blonde,
Ne nule femme de ceat monde,
Nama onegues si furt nului,
Come ele fisi lanto celui."
La Vieille Truande.
" Tristans tant com ho en c'est monde,
Nama autant Yoge la Blonde
Com si deux amans s'entre aimerent."
Conte de la Dame qui areine demandoit.
A very ancient allusion to the story of our romancer is quoted
by Fauchet, from the songs of the King of Navarre, and has been Eight arts are mine :-to wield the steei, To curb the warike horse,
noticed in our Introduction. To win the lake, or, skale op heel,
After all, it will perhaps be the best instance of the universal To urze my rapid course;
and continued popularity of the tale of Sir Tristrer, that Boiardo To barl, well-all, the martial spear,
and Ariosto have founded upon his history the idea of the two To brush with our the inain:
enchanted fountains, which produced the opposite effects of Al these are mine, Chough doomed to bear
love and hatred, and occasioned the various and capricious events A Ruarian malde dis lain,"
in the loves of Rinaldo and Angelica. Boiardo thus describes * The mactice of putting old and silver pins into goblets and
the Fountain of Hatred : enking vesele, was intended to regulate the draught of each
i. Ell era tutta d'oro lavorata, Daaral must, so that all might have an equal share of the
Et d'albastro candidlo, e pulito; Terate. It was of Anglo-Saxon ongin, and is, by the facetious
E cosibel, che chi dentro signata, Gee supposed to have given rise to our vulgar expression, of
Vivali il prato, e fur lutto colpito:
Dicon che da Merlin ti fabbricata, king loa Merty pin. William of Malmesbury gives the
Per Tristan, che d'Isotta era invaghito, hasar of this invention to no lesa a personage than št. Dun
Accioch 'ivi bevendo, si sconinske. stas: * in tantum et in frivolis pacis sequax, ut quia compatriote
L'amor di quella douna, e la lasciasse. tabens convenientes, jarque temulenti, pro more bibendi
Ma non consenti mai la son sciagura, tonerent, ipse clavos arzenteos vel aureos vasis affigi jusserit;
Di far lo a questa fonte capitare; tu, dan tetam suam quis pie cognosceret, non plus, subserviente
Quantunque andasse in volua alla ventura, Pandia, vel ipso appeteret, vel alium appetere cogeret." De
Cercundo il mondo per terra, o per mare.
13 Gestir Rag. Ang lib. 2. Giving Dunstan all credit for his pacific
vs, this measuring out bumpers to his drunken countrymen terms a singular occupation for a saint and an archbishop.
"Fair was that fountain, scalpturel all with gold,
With alabaster sculptured, rich and rare, The lie of Tristrem and Yaonde became proverbial during
And in its bain clear thou mightot behold the middle ages, and the references to it are innumerable. A
The fowery marge reflecta frol and fair. fr ray be noticed, out of a great number. In the Temple of
Sauge Merlin framed the font, s legenda ler, Csapainted by Wynkin de Worde, there occurs, among the
Wleen on fair Ysinde doale Tristrem brave, futhi servants of Love,
That the good erraunt knight, arriving there,
Might quartoblivion in the enchantel wave,
And leave his luckless lose, and 'scape his timeless grave.
“But ne'er the warrior's evil fate allowed The sententious Gower treats of their story in the following verses,
His steps that fountain's charmei vorge to gain, of which it seems to be the moral, that gentlemen and ladies
Though restless, roving on autenture proud, ebeeld beware of drinking a cup too much.
He traversed ott the land, and oft the main." * Hir. de amoris ebrietate ponit exemplum, qualiter Tristans, ob potuin quem Brengwayn in vani (vino) ei porrexit, de amore Among the enchanted palaces which profusely adorn the Orteze Lolde inebriatus exstitit."
lando Furioso, is a lodge, called the Rocea di Tristano, on ac. * And for to loke, in evidence,
count of a certain adventure achieved there by our hero. ---Canto Upon the othe experience;
Dante has also given Sir Tristrem a place among the lovers,
described, in the Inferno, as fliucing through the air like a flock of With tele solle. Whan they dronke
cranes : The drake, which Brailgxeine hern betok,
" Vedi Paris, Tristano; e piu de mille
Ombre mostromni, e vominoll' a dito,
Ch'amor di nostra vita dep.artille."
I John Baptist van Helmont, in a treatise De Magnetica Mor-
borum Curazione, containing, as may be supposed from the In love's cans, ani, what is more,
title, much mystic jargon about sympathy, informs us, that by Of dronkenhyp for to drale,
the use of a particular talisman, he attached a dog to his person, As it bylone tefell in de le,
in the same manner as Hodain is said to have become inseparable Whereof thou tuyght the better cachowe
from Ysonde and Tristr m, by licking the cup which hud conOf dronleo then, that the pa sewe
tained the boire amorueuse, It is sufficiently strange, in the The conpany, in m manere, A great example thou shalt bere."-Lib. sext.
present day, to see the metaphysical nonsense of Albertus and The moralist sain introduces Tristrem among the true lovers
Van Helmont reviving successfully, in the modern charlatanisin in the train of Venus:
of animal magnetism and metallic tractors! Ther wae Tristrem, which was beloved
piqued himself on his continence, through which, with Sir Percival, he accomWith bele Lole, and Lancelot
plished the alventure of the Sangreal. Sir Percival was sorely templed by the Sude with (nor, and Galabote
devil, in shape of a fair dannel; but be repented in time, and drove his sword With his lady."
through his own thigh, as a peuance for his frailty. See Lancelot du Lac *Gewer is here inostret. Galabant, o Galahad, had no paramour, but Paris, 1533. La tierre partie
Sche tok that loue drink,
What haue Y don wougn,
Whi wille ye spille mi blode ?".
Ysonde the leuedi gode,
Hath hot thou schali be slain."
Bad hem say the Quen;
"Greteth wele mi leuedy,
That ai trewe hath ben;
Smockes hadde sche and 'Y,
And hir was solwy to sent
Bi Marke tho hye schuld ly,
Y lent hir min al clen,
As thare :
Oghain hir, wele Y wen,
No dede Y neuer mare."-
Thai nold hir nought slo,
Bot went oghain to the Quen,
Y sonde asked hem to,
What seyd hye you bitven ?"-
-"Hye bad ous saye you so,
Your smock was solwy to sen,
Bi Mark the ye schuld ly,
Y lent hir min al clene,
Tho asked Y sonde the kene,
--"Whare is that trewe may ?"-
Tho seyd Ysonde with mode,
-"Mi maiden ye han slain !"
Sche swore by Godes rode,
Thai schuld ben hong and drain;
Sche bede hem yiftes gode,
To fechen hir ogain ;
Thai fetten hir, ther sche stode,
Tho was Ysonde ful fain,
So trewe sche fond Brengwain,
That sche loued hir wele ay.
Made was the saughtening,
And alle forgheve bidene.
Tristrem with outen lesing,
Played with the Quen.
Fram Irlond to the King,
An harpour com bitven; —“Ye moten slen and hide
An harp he gan forth bring,
Swiche no hadde thai neuer sen,
Him self with outen wen,
Bar it day and night.
Y sonde he loued in are,
He that the harp brought;
About his hals he it bare,
Richelich it was wrought;
He hidde it euer mare,
Out no com it nought:
-"Thine harp whi wiltow spare, s She cried merci anough,
Yif thou ther of can ought,
Of gle?"• The barbarous ingratitude of the Queen of Cornwall, resem.
Entour son col porta noun tabour, bles that of the heroine in Middleton's Changeling, an old play,
Depeint de or et riche atour," &c. which contains some passages horribly striking.
Besides their harp, minstrels usually suspended about then * The allegory of Brengwain is more delicutely expressed in necks a blazon of the arms of their patron Sir David Lindsay the folio: “Quant Madame Ysoult se partist de Yrland, elle directs, that' na menstrall sall weir his lord or princis armes as avoit une fleur de liz, qu'elle de voit porter au Roy Mare; et une ane herald dois. But he sall hier them ewin on the midde of de nos damoyselles en avoit une aultre. Madame perdit la sienne, his breist, and with ane round circle about the schield, qubilk is dont elle eust est mal baillee; quant la damoyselle luy presentoit, callit ane besigel in armis." par moy la sienne, que elle avoit bien gard-e, dont elle fut saul! 6 In the folio, this remonstrance is addressed by King Mark to ve; et cuide. que pour celle bont, me fait elle mourir ; car je no Heylot l'Envoysie, the minstrel of King Arthur, whose duty it achy aultre achoison"-Fucillet xlviii. The ruffians, however, was to fing lays composed in honour of the Round Table. It tje Brengwain to a tree, and leave her to be devoured by wild seems King Mark (who ought not to have thrown the first stone bensis : but she is delivered by Palamedes, a gallant warrior, the on such an occasion) had sent certain vituperative letters to Ar rival of Tristrem.
thur and Guenever, reproaching them with the intercourse which : It afterwards appears that this harper was an Irish Earl, a that fair princess maintained with Lancelot du Lac. In revenge former lover of Ysonde, thus disguised. The description resem of this insult, Dinadam, the wit of the Round Table, composed bles that of the Minstrel, in an ancient MS. Fabliau, in the British a satirically against the Cornish monarch, and sent Helyot to Museum, commencing thus :
sing it at his cour pleniere, held at Tintagel. The harper de
clined to play till much pressed by King Mark, and then sung “Seynoary escntes un petit,
this performance of Dinadam, which the Morte Arthur terins Si orrez un tres bon Jeluit,
* the worst lay that ever harper sung with harp, or with any De un menestril, que para la terre, Par merveille e avantre guere ;
other instrument."-a character which it deserves in more respecta Si vint de la Loundres en un proe,
than one. Tristan, Second Partie, fueil. 61. Morte Arthur Encountru le roy esa meisnee;
Chapters 114, 117.